A state senator driving the effort to create a passenger rail link between New York City and the Berkshires says funding is nearly in place to launch a pilot program for weekend service in spring 2020. The move would resurrect what was a popular tourist route and perhaps boost the economy of Western Massachusetts that much more.
The state Senate in late May adopted budget amendments that Senator Adam Hinds proposed, including $240,000 to support the core of running a pilot program from Manhattan’s Penn Station to the train station in Pittsfield on weekends from Memorial Day to Columbus Day in 2020—high season in the Berkshires.
The budget amendments for what’s been dubbed the Berkshire Flyer also include $100,000 for 1Berkshire, the official Regional Tourism Council of Berkshire County, to sell New Yorkers on the idea of weekend getaways; and $30,000 for the Berkshire Regional Transit Authority, which would sponsor the service locally, to hire a manager for the project. Read more of “New York City-to-Berkshires Amtrak pilot could start in 2020, thanks to funding.”